Inspiration Fanatic

Five Favorite Goddess Spirituality-Themed Tarot and Oracle Cards

For today’s #InspirationFanatic Friday, I decided to review five of my favorite sets of guidance cards (in no particular order) that I find to be relevant to Goddess spirituality. I chose to cover this topic in regards to inspiration as the artwork in particular in these decks is very meaningful and fuels my creativity. Not only do these cards feel affirming to me from a Goddess spirituality perspective, I also find the cards themselves and the guidebooks with which they come to be supportive to me as a trauma survivor. Sometimes the messages are difficult to hear, but I do not find myself triggered by them on a regular basis. The impact they have on me feels at its most intense like a gentle nudge instead of a shove or a harsh word. This reaction could of course vary from person to person.

I am not a professional tarot reader nor do I claim to have particular skill or insight into interpreting cards. For me, the use of such cards is primarily as a means of inner work, not as a way to divine the future. I tend to ask specific questions of Goddess before I pull cards and often journal about my interpretations.

My list is limited to the cards I’ve personally purchased, so I am very eager to hear your recommendations for additional resources. I do not have an affiliate relationship with any of the creators, so my insights are not unduly influenced. I’ve also included a list at the end of my post of cards I hope to soon add to my collection.

  • Womenrunes: The runes on these cards were originally created by Shekhinah Mountainwater and revived by Molly Remer. They are easy to draw and can be combined to provide personalized messages. I’ve inscribed an entire set of them on river stone and a few on my arm! The guidebook is poetic in nature, leaving a lot of room for intuitive interpretation.
  • Soulful Woman Guidance Cards: This deck speaks to me on a regular basis and is one of my “go-to” choices. Part of the reason is that I sometimes dislike having to thumb through a small guidebook in order to figure out what each card means. With this deck, I am able to gain insight quickly as there is both a theme and an affirmation printed directly on the card. The artwork feels accessible and I find the insight I gain from using this deck to be motivational.
  • Sacred Rebels Oracle: These oracle cards contain some of my favorite artwork. The creators of the deck included art from women from across the globe. Each time I draw a card anew, I realize there was something in the image I missed the first time through. The guidebook has plenty of description of how to grow from the meaning of the card without being too prescriptive. I do notice a thread of the “law of attraction” peeking through at moments, of which I am not a fan, but the overall message is positive and uplifting.
  • The Good Tarot: The imagery of this deck is ethereal and soft to me. There are aspects of traditional tarot, but the focus is more on affirming where a person is in the present day instead of forecasting future developments. Additionally, the four elements are represented which I find helps me connect to the meaning of the cards more fully than cups, swords, etc. The guidebook is pretty sparse with a summary paragraph or a few sentences for each card; this is my personal preference as I like to intuit meaning rather than feeling like I’m being restricted by an overly descriptive narration.
  • The Goddess Oracle: I find this deck to be particularly useful when I’m feeling in need of the presence of Goddess in my life. The guidebook to each card invites the reader on an inner journey in which the person communes with the Goddess. I found the writing to be a bit formulaic in its approach here and would have liked a bit more background on the historic and cultural significance of each Goddess. The artwork is beautiful and inviting.

On my wish-list:

  • Celtic Goddess Oracle Cards: I am a huge fan of Judith Shaw’s artwork and writing. There is an elegance and warmth that exudes from her paintings, and in the descriptions she’s shared of her artwork, I can see the thought and research that has gone into her creations. I can’t wait to purchase this 35-card deck!
  • Infuse Your Life with Joy and Delight Inspirational Card Deck: I’ve been following Illisa Millermoon on Instagram for a while, and I find her joy to be contagious! She shares about her daily life, including her Sparkle Quests, and her creative process, and I can see the energy that’s been poured into this 52-card deck (as well as all the beautiful colors!). Can’t wait to have it for myself.

What are your favorite oracle or tarot cards, and why do you prefer them? To what extent do you include decks that “challenge” you in your work? How do you conceptualize your use of the cards? Is it a conversation with Source, divination of the future, inner work, or another process? Do you see the cards themselves as a spiritual entity and/or a conduit through which you can act in relationship with Deity?

Inner Work

Moon Ritual Pocket Tins

I am so excited to be sharing my newest pagan/witchy creation with you, just in time for the Full Moon in Aries this week! I’ve included all the materials I used so that you can create a similar system for yourself if it appeals to you. As I’ve grown in my spiritual walk, I’ve been drawn to conducting personal ceremony on the new and full moons in relation to astrological signs, but have felt a bit lost as to how to proceed. I wanted a way to remember the intentions I set on the new moon when the same sign comes around six months later on the full moon. I wrote recently about the meaning I find in small treasures. What I have settled on is creating pocket tins for each astrological sign, with materials I can use for the corresponding new and full moon. Tarot-Astrology lists the dates and signs for upcoming new and full moons.

Each sign invites us to consider a different aspect of our personality and selfhood as each moon unfolds. We may even find ourselves subtly mimicking the characteristics of the sign during the days leading up to and following the moon. If we attend to the astrological calendar throughout the year, inner areas that we might otherwise neglect will get attention and care.

Materials To Include

This is definitely a concept that welcomes artistic innovation. As I noted in one of my first blogs, I am not physically gifted in creative works, so I can only imagine what someone with artistic talent could do with this! I am somewhat obsessed with miniatures so that dictated my theme; take any special needs into account for your own work. The initial cost can be a bit expensive, but you can buy the materials in bulk to save money.

Tins or boxes

Crystals

Tealight candles

Tea bags or individually-wrapped chocolates

Wands

Decorative paper (This type includes materials for each sign).

Charms and jewelry creations

Herbs (in a sealed container)

Mini-journal (handmade—I glued tissue paper on regular strips of paper and stapled it together)

Tarot cards (these are by far the most expensive element. People with more self-control than I have can just use their regular cards during the ritual)

Handkerchiefs/Ritual Cloth

*I suggest connecting something in your tin or box to the element that the sign represents. Aries is a Fire sign so I chose a red cloth.

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New Moon Activities

New moons are for inner, intuitive work. They give us space and quiet to delve into our heart-space in order to better understand our unconscious needs and wishes. We can then make plans for how we would like to see these dreams come to fruition.

For each new moon, I include a poem I wrote related to the sign and my intended inner work. For the first year of using the tins, I will be purchasing a new mini tarot for each new moon. Rather than using it immediately, I instead bless it and include it in the box. I also create a small journal into which I write my intentions as well as a tarot card layout with corresponding statements or questions.

The basic format for my new moon ritual is to start by brewing tea with the teabag I’ve included and drinking it to center myself. I light the candle and sage. I cast a circle with the wand. The crystals can either be held to energize them during the reading of the chant I’ve included, or they can be laid out in a pattern that fits with the sign and its corresponding element. As noted above, I spend time writing in the journal and welcoming the tarot cards to my repertoire. I will pull cards if I need assistance with setting my intentions. I then close the circle and return the materials to the box.

Full Moon Activities

Full moons are for action and releasing. They allow us to realize the progress we’ve made for the previous six months on our intentions, as well as to let go of anything related to the inner work that is no longer in our best interest. We can gain clear sight during this time as to who we are and where we are going.

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The main material I add to the tin during the full moon is a poem proclaiming the action I will take as it corresponds to the astrological sign’s focus. I also include a tea bag for the next new moon practice. I update any materials that need to be refreshed. I expose the materials in the box to the full moon a day or before the ritual, and leave them sitting out for a day or two afterwards in order to capture the energy being transmitted. I have a lot of curious creatures where I live so I have to settle for placing them near a window.

My full moon ritual begins by lighting the candle and sage while I cast a circle with the wand. In addition to the uses for the crystals I included at the new moon, I may also work with them to remove negative energy I am carrying and absorb positive energy they carry. I refresh them in the full moon light before storing the box. I review the intentions I set six months earlier, and record the manifestations I’ve already seen of them in my life. I list the actions I plan to take in the next six months to bring them to harvest. I also note anything that needs to be released in the journal; I use the scrap paper to write and then discard/burn anything that feels like a significant burden. Using the layout I wrote on the new moon, I draw tarot cards and make meaning as it relates to the focus of the sign for the outcomes they reveal for my life. I close the circle and, as noted above, let the materials “breathe” for a few days before putting everything away.

I encourage you to find the particular format of celebrating the moon phases that best suits your needs. I lived decades of my life with minimal awareness of the astrological signs and the moon phases; tapping into their patterns has become very grounding and kept me focused on positive, uplifting aspects of life. Engaging in a practice that changes every two weeks (new moon to full moon) invites us to recharge and renew our process with regularity and dedication.

 

 

Inner Work

Mini-Ritual for Medical Procedures

Many trauma survivors have difficulty with medical procedures. These may be triggering for many reasons—they often include physical discomfort or pain, there is a power difference between the doctor and patient, and they include significant financial stressors and decision-making demands. I’m a proponent of working with a therapist to help to heal from trauma for many reasons, including the fact that mental health symptoms may make following through on medical care difficult or impossible.

I’m currently in the middle of having a root canal redone. As in, I had it done a few years ago, and now have to have the previous work removed and replaced. I was so triggered by the first experience I avoided dentists for a while, and have now found myself being verbally combative in response to those who are supposed to be helping me. Unfortunately, finding a medical professional who is sensitive to the needs of people with PTSD and trauma histories can be very hit or miss and I haven’t had a lot of success. For today’s #InnerWork Wednesday, I wanted to develop a ritual to help me transform my feelings of helplessness in order to focus my intention, my voice and my energy before undergoing additional procedures.*

Instructions

Gather the following items in your sacred space:

A candle (intuitively choose the color)

A piece of polymer clay

An oracle or tarot deck

Step 1: Cast a circle or center yourself using meditation, yoga, whatever you use to ground.

Step 2: Spend some time using your inner eye to create an image of a tree covered in leaves. Use all of your senses to draw out each element of how it would look, feel, smell and sound. Spend some time mentally relaxing under its branches.

Step 3: Ask Deity or your inner Wisdom to show you the specific question you need to ask in order to ground yourself before your medical procedure. For example, perhaps there is an attitude or strength you can cultivate for assistance, or a character trait that will be strengthened by engaging in self-care and following through on your doctor’s advice.

Step 4: After deciding upon the question, draw a Tarot or oracle card and meditate on what it reveals to you.

Step 5: Decide how you wish to use the clay. You can either shape it into the body part related to your medical procedure, or you can shape it into a representation of what the card revealed to you. Or both!

Step 6: Place your clay creation in front of the candle. Light the candle, and, if it fits your practice to do so, ask your Deity or Inner Wisdom to be present with you during the procedure and to guide you in developing the traits you need to undergo it successfully.

Step 7: Imagine the tree again, and imagine yourself underneath of it being filled with strength, voice, intention and energy. Spend as much time as you need to draw in the rootedness the tree offers. Listen for any healing messages, and thank the tree for its blessings.

Step 8: Thank your Deity or Inner Wisdom for guidance, and close the circle.

Consider taking something with you to your appointment that you can touch in order to ground yourself. The polymer clay could be baked and turned into an amulet for protection or talisman for blessing for this purpose. I created a witch jar filled with hearts to represent lovingkindness, and I wear a bracelet with chakra stones that also has an evil eye to ward off any negative energies.

*Please note that I am primarily focused in this post on routine types of medical care here; if you are having major surgery or testing that could be life-altering, I definitely encourage you to seek out additional resources and consult your support system as there could be an element of grief or direct trauma involved in those situations.

If you decide to use any of this ritual in your own practice, be sure to adapt it to your own preferences and needs. It may be worth doing at least parts of it more than once to solidify your mental imagery and connection to Source before your procedure. I welcome any links to other practices you have found helpful!

 

 

 

 

Inner Work

Self-Growth and Exploration Through Oracle Cards

The first oracle cards are thought to have been created by Madame Lenormand in the 1800’s in France. Oracle decks contain fewer cards than Tarot decks. The artwork and images are often the central focus of the card. I like using them because I find them easy to interpret and because there are certain decks that I think are very positive and uplifting.

My intention here for #InnerWork Wednesday is to describe a few ways in which you can use oracle cards, as well as some topics to consider at a reading and specific layouts you can use. I am not a professional card reader, so please view this as informational only.

Styles of Use

Oracle cards can be used as a part of inner work, during a formal ritual, or as a source of daily inspiration. The layouts I’ve included would work best during inner work, but the “questions to ponder” section could be relevant during a daily card pull as well. If you are developing a formal ritual, you can incorporate a specific focus into your reading and record the results so that you can process them over time.

Questions to Ponder

Some questions you can ask yourself as you create your sacred space in which you will draw your cards:

  • What do I want to gain from today’s inner work?
  • Which spiritual need do I have right now that I’d like to address?
  • What’s my intuition telling me to consider?
  • How am I showing up in my life, and how can my inner work right now impact that?

Card Layouts for Hope and Inspiration

I encourage you to research different card layouts that you can use for specific purposes. Be sure the oracle cards you are using make sense with these types of questions; some decks are more conducive to this type of work than others.

Hope for Healing From Trauma Card Layout

The process of healing from past traumas is often non-linear, with continued layers of self-discovery and change. The card layout here is a spin on the classic past-present-future reading. If you are working with mental health professionals or spiritual coaches, consider sharing any insights you gain with them.

Draw three cards and place them on top of each other. Uncover one at a time, and line up from left to right.

 

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Soulful Woman Guidance Cards by Shushann Movsessian and Gemma Summers.

 

Card 1: What is the wisdom that have you gained from your past experiences that can function as your gift to the world?

Card 2: Which resource can you access in the present moment in order to assist you in your healing process?

Card 3: Which area of growth remains for you to discover or access in the future?

 Creative Endeavors Layout

This layout is intended to represent guidance when you are either considering a new creative endeavor or feeling stuck in your process in terms of inspiration. Pull cards and lay out in the following arrangement:

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Card 1: What do you need to cultivate in your life in order to drive your creative enterprise?

Card 2: On what trait or behavior may you be focusing too heavily, so much so that it may get in the way of your ability to be creative?

Card 3: Other people often serve as a wellspring of our own creativity. Which trait or behavior could you seek in others in order to boost your endeavor?

Card 4: What trait or behavior do the products of your creativity inspire in others?

Card 5: Which resource do you have that serves as a foundation for your creativity?